A search of George Shirakawa Jr.‘s home the day before Thanksgiving turned up evidence that suggests Xavier Campos’ 2010 City Council campaign paid for materials to create a fraudulent political mailer that helped the latter get elected. The mailers portrayed Campos’ opponent, Magdalena Carrasco, as a communist to East San Jose’s Vietnamese voters, and Shirakawa’s DNA was found on a stamp affixed to one of the mailers. Campos ended up winning the primary election against Carrasco by 20 votes and later won the runoff.
On Nov. 27, an investigator for the District Attorney’s office seized laptops, printers, receipts, campaign documents and flyers from Shirakawa’s home, located at 2609 Apollo Dr. in San Jose. The search warrant was issued after a DA review of Campos’ 2010 campaign disclosure forms showed that a $93.93 purchase was made from a company called KS Cartridges, based out of the same address. The owner of that business, Kenley Shirakawa, is George’s younger brother. The receipt shows that HP ink cartridges—matching those the DA believes were used in producing the fraudulent mailers—were purchased by Linda Delgado, who served as a treasurer for both Campos and George Shirakawa Jr. She is also the mother of one of Shirakawa’s children.
The receipt notes that the purchase for the ink cartridges was made April 28, 2010. The fraudulent political mailers targeting Vietnamese voters and attained by the DA’s office were postmarked May 14, 2010.
“After discovering that printer cartridges were purchased just prior to the mailing of the illegal campaign flyers, we searched Xavier Campos’ campaign receipts for additional telltale receipts in that same time period,” DA investigator Russel Chubon wrote. “We found an Office Depot receipt dated May 8, 2010—only six days prior to the postmark on the flyers—for the purchase of two half reams of card stock paper similar to that used for the flyers. The same receipt showed the purchase of two rolls of 100 postage stamps. We also found US Post Office receipts dated May 3 and May 6, 2010 for seventeen rolls of 100 “44c US Flag” stamps, which are the stamps used on the illegal 2010 flyers. Lastly, we found an April 2, 2010 OfficeMax receipt for self-adhesive mailing labels of the size used on the illegal 2010 flyers. Although none of these other receipts was associated with GEORGE SHIRAKAWA’s home address, the evidence that all of these other materials necessary to make the flyers were purchased by the Xavier Campos campaign during this period suggests that the ink cartridges were also purchased to make the flyers.”
The investigator added that there is additional evidence that Delgado carried out all of the purchases for Campos’ campaign.
“Her signature appears on that committee’s 460 forms as its treasurer,” Chubon wrote. “In most campaigns, the treasurer is the person who spends money on behalf of the committee. Moreover, a handwritten note on one of the receipts reads: ‘Linda, Please order these ink cartridges for the Xavier campaign. Gracias, Enrique.’”
Campos refused to talk about the matter with the grand jury last month, invoking the Fifth Amendment. He later gave an interview to NBC Bay Area and denied any involvement in the mail fraud scandal.
A call to the number listed for KS Cartridges went to voicemail. Kenley Shirakawa served as a treasurer for his older brother in past campaigns, and there is some question about who signed some of those campaign disclosure forms, while under penalty of perjury.
George Shirakawa Jr. is currently in Santa Rita Jail on a year-long sentence, while Campos is running for re-election to his District 5 council seat. Carrasco has pulled papers to run against him again, and Aaron Resendez has also announced his intentions to run for the seat.